4. Coaching must be on point
Dan Quinn is the biggest variable in whether or not the Falcons will make the 2016 playoffs. For them to be able to have a shot he is going to have to take the next step both as a coach and as a leader. The Falcons need strong leadership.
Quinn can offer that, the question is does he have the coaching skill set to get the Falcons to that next level? This season should do a lot to answer that question. He is a defensive first coach which is also a strong point on a defensively challenged team.
He simply needs to be able to manage the clock effectively and lead the defense as it continues to rebuild. If he can do both of these things and take a step forward with his coaching ability the Falcons will have a great chance not only of making the playoffs, but of going beyond the first round.
Kyle Shanahan is the Falcons OC, like it or not. While he is not as big of a key to the success of this season as Quinn he still play a significant role. Shanahan’s ability to recognize that it is Matt Ryan running the offense and not a dink and dunk quarterback the better that Ryan will play and even more importantly more the offense will score.
Next: No. 3